Exploring the symbiotic relationship between architecture and nature: A Nordic training center



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Texas Tech University


Nature has inspired the creative mind throughout history. The physical cooperation with the natural environment is necessary to humankind's survival; while the symbolic relationship represents a consciousness of our biological place in the universe. The purpose of this thesis is to trace the lineage of an organically based design ethic and to isolate the common principles of such an architecture in which the architect understands nature, not in terms of physical science alone, but in a metaphysical and poetic sense as well. A re-examination of ancient Native American myths, notions, and traditional spiritual beliefs reveal a holistic understanding toward building and nature, and the relationship between life and land, the processes of nature, and man's role in maintaining the equilibrium. These beliefs and attitudes reemerge in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries as the underlying principles of the organic movement, an architectural approach in keeping with nature's behavior, and in aligrmient wdth a region's contextual elements, including culture, climate, and tradition. The result is an architecture that is compatible wdth nature. Finally, the future of the organic tradition and the possible contribution made by chaos theory will be explored.

The principles established through this thesis will be expressed through the architectural vehicle of a Nordic Training Center located in a wilderness setting northeast of Durango, Colorado. The Nordic Center will be used as a training facility for Olympic hopefiils as well as a touring center for amateurs. It is hoped that the organic approach detailed in this thesis will create a design that forms a symbiotic relationship with nature and the spiritual roots of the place and time.



Physical education and training, Winter sports facilities, Sports facilities